BEIJING (AP) — Want to play football as a naturalized Chinese citizen? Better brush up on your Communist Party history.
New guidelines issued by the Chinese Football Association say naturalized players must learn the history and basic theories, in addition to China’s national anthem, flag, symbols, national conditions and Chinese culture.
A Chinese-language learning plan must also be submitted and a monthly report on the players’ progress in all fields submitted to the CFA each month.
China is recruiting foreign players of Chinese background in a bid to raise playing standards in the domestic league and internationally, where China’s men have been perennial underperformers.
Among those taking up the offer are Norway’s Chinese-born Hou Yongyong, who now plays for Beijing Guoan and Nico Yennaris, who came up through the Arsenal youth program.
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